How to Play Hey Hey My My by Neil Young

richardsguitarstudio on August 30, 2015


In this lessons, Nate shows you how to play Hey Hey My My by Neil Young. This song is one of the greatest acoustic singer/songwriter songs of all time, in my humble opinion. I’ve heard Neil Young play this one tuned a half step down, as well as a whole step (a whole step down in my favorite recording – Farm Aid – you will get goosebumps all over your body, an amazing performance). The lesson here is in standard tuning for convenience-sake.

Here are a few tips:

  1. Use rest strokes to play the bass melody notes. This tip is a theme on this blog, isn’t it? That’s because it is so effective. Use rest strokes to confidently follow through and emphasize the melody notes without accidentally creating too much string noise.
  2. Follow the strumming symbols. Following the strumming pattern will help you physically internalize the rhythm. Placing a down where there should be an up, and vise versa, will throw off the feel and mess up the groove. This problem is usually the number 1 reason why my students have trouble when learning a song. Once they match up the rhythm (1 nd 2 and etc) with the pick (down up down up etc), place downstrokes on downbeats and upstrokes on upbeats, the song falls into place and sounds great.
  3. Watch the video and look at the fingerings. This will help you hold down the chord and play the bass melody at the same time efficiently and without too much unnecessary movement, and make a smooth and connected sound.

Have fun with this one. Our Richards Rock Academy band 9th Spectrum has been working on this one as a set-break for their shows.

Nate from Richards Guitar Studio and Richards Rock Academy shows you how to play Hey Hey My My by Neil Young. Learn the strumming, chords, picking, and melody.

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Richards Guitar Studio provides professional guitar, drum, and bass lessons and rock band school in Aston, PA. Serving Delaware County – Media, Swarthmore, Springfield, Ridley, Garnet Valley, and Wallingford.

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